Cristiano Ronaldo tests positive for COVID-19

LISBON, Portugal (AP) — Cristiano Ronaldo has become the latest high-profile soccer star to test positive for the coronavirus.

The Portuguese soccer federation said Tuesday that Ronaldo was doing well and had no symptoms after he tested positive while with his country’s national team.

He was in isolation and was dropped from the country’s Nations League match against Sweden on Wednesday in Lisbon.

Ronaldo, one of the most prolific goal scorers in the sport’s history, played in the 0-0 draw at France in the Nations League on Sunday and in the 0-0 draw against Spain in a friendly last week.

On Monday, the Juventus forward posted a photo on Twitter and Instagram showing him and the rest of the Portugal squad having a meal together. The players were all close to each other at a table, with a smiling Ronaldo apparently taking the photo himself at the front end.

Along with the tweet, Ronaldo wrote, in Portuguese, “United on and off the field!”

The 35-year-old Ronaldo last month became only the second male soccer player to reach 100 goals for a national team, after former Iran striker Ali Daei.

Players who tested positive for COVID-19 recently include Neymar, Kylian Mbappé, Paul Pogba, Paulo Dybala, Ángel Di María, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Diego Costa.

The Portuguese federation said Ronaldo’s result prompted another round of tests for the rest of the national squad. It said everyone else in the team tested negative.

Tuesday’s practice session was moved from the morning to the afternoon so there was time for all the results to come back.

The Portuguese federation did not immediately release details about where Ronaldo was in isolation, or for how long he would stay there.

The Portuguese daily Record said Ronaldo’s positive result came after he was tested on Monday. The national team players have been tested seven times in the last eight days, Portuguese media said.

Speaking during an official visit to Belgium, Portugal President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa said he had already wished Ronaldo the best in his recovery. He said the Portuguese star underwent a second test immediately after having the first positive result confirmed.

Two other Portugal players, José Fonte and Anthony Lopes, tested positive for COVID-19 recently.

Portugal coach Fernando Santos downplayed the positive results last week, saying that players were getting infected “everywhere in the world.”

“We are the most tested people and we have the guarantee that everyone who will be traveling to France with us are negative,” Santos said before the match against France.

Portugal and France lead Group 3 of the Nations League with seven points each after three matches.

Ronaldo could miss Juventus’ Serie A match at Crotone on Saturday and the team’s Champions League opener at Dynamo Kyiv next Tuesday. And depending on his condition and the results of future tests, he could also miss the much-anticipated match against Barcelona on Oct. 28.

Juventus had been in isolation following positive tests for two staff members. There has been some controversy that Ronaldo and six other players were allowed to leave the isolated group and join their national teams.

Portugal’s next round of matches will be next month.

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